The Calypso coffee

The Calypso coffee

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Hot chocolate gets all the credit, and most of the attention, when it comes to warming winter drinks. But there is a lot to be said for a creamy coffee confection, and a spiked one in particular. I know – you’re thinking “Irish coffee” and “No, thank you”. But there’s so much more to the genre than this much maligned (and often badly made) version.

Coffee gets on so well with a host of other spirits – rum, vodka, creamy liqueurs – that it’s practically negligent not to introduce them (in a responsible manner, of course). A spiked affogato makes the easiest dessert, sip a hot white Russian in front of the fire, or savour the comforting spice of a calypso coffee in the perfect nightcap.


  • 3⁄4 cup brewed coffee
  • 2 T dark or golden rum
  • 2 T coffee liqueur
  • sugar, to taste
  • cream, for serving
  • a dash castor sugar (optional)
  • a drop vanilla extract
  • cocoa powder, for serving

Cooking Instructions

1. Brew coffee as usual and pour 3⁄4 cup into a cup or double- walled glass.

2. Stir in dark or golden rum and coffee liqueur such as Tia Maria or Kahlua. Sweeten to taste – the darker the sugar, the better the result.

3. Top with a layer of cream poured slowly over the back of a teaspoon. For a decadent note, lightly whip the cream with a dash of caster sugar and a drop of vanilla extract before pouring. Dust with cocoa and serve immediately. This drink does not appreciate being left to the cold – but then again, who does?

Find more cocktail recipes here.

Photograph: Jan Ras
Production: Bianca Strydom
Food assistant: Emma Morey

Jeanne Calitz Recipe by: Jeanne Calitz
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Jeanne Calitz is the commercial projects editor at TASTE. She is also a food, travel and arts writer, as well as a seasonal cook.

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